Tag Archives: MRFF

POW/MIA Network Seeks to Intervene in Lawsuit over Bible

POW/MIA lawsuit may be decided on National POW/MIA Recognition Day…

The Northeast POW/MIA Network has asked the Courts to allow it to intervene in the lawsuit between James Chamberlain and the Veterans Administration, in which Chamberlain (who is being ‘sponsored’ by Michael “Mikey” Weinstein) has claimed the Manchester, NH, VA Medical Center is violating the Constitution by allowing a Bible to sit on a POW/MIA remembrance table.  The Network sponsored the display in question, and provided the Bible:

The veterans group that sponsors the oldest continuing POW-MIA vigil in the country is asking a federal court to allow it to intervene in a case that centers on whether a former POW’s Bible can be featured in a lobby display at the Manchester VA hospital…

The Manchester display includes a Bible donated by Herman “Herk” Streitburger, a Read more

Beard Requests Haven’t Spiked, But Religious Freedom Rises

In a recent article the Air Force indicated that despite the recent publicity of Airmen and other military members being granted waivers to grow religious beards, there hasn’t been a marked increase in the requests:

The Air Force, citing privacy concerns, declined to identify how many airmen have obtained waivers based on religious exemptions but said the publicity surrounding approvals in recent years has not caused an increase in waiver requests.

The article also revealed that despite the publicity surrounding the “heathen” beard approval for SSgt Garrett Sopchak, he was actually the second Airman to get one for “norse heathenism”, after SSgt William Bailey in March.

The policy changes that have supported Read more

Not-so-anonymous Chaplain Endorser Endorses Mikey Weinstein

Michael “Mikey” Weinstein recently hailed an email he said he received from [emphasis original]

a senior Chaplain official, a devout evangelical Christian by the way, who has direct control over the official licensure (“Endorsement”) of many active duty U.S. military chaplains sharing his denomination.

A person who controls endorsement is simply a chaplain endorser, so the typically-over-verbose Mikey is really saying he received email from

an evangelical Christian chaplain endorser

Could have just said that the first time.

Despite saying the chaplain had “come out” in support of him, Weinstein left the email anonymous (the opposite of coming out, no?), quoting it as saying

[Weinstein] is a staunch defender of religious freedom in the military and VA. He is a staunch believer in BOTH of the religion clauses of the First Amendment…One doesn’t want Read more

US Air Force Grants Exemption for Norse Heathen Beard

The Air Force Times reports on Air Force SSgt Garrett Sopchak, who just became the first US Air Force Airman to be allowed to wear a beard — because he adheres to Norse Heathen religious beliefs.

The Army granted a similar waiver last year, and beard exemptions have been granted for a growing number of Sikhs and Muslims — though not atheists.

Sopchak, a 28-year-old aerospace ground equipment craftsman at Hill Air Force Base in Utah, on July 8 become the first airman to get approval to wear a beard in accordance with his Heathen faith.

Sopchak said in a Tuesday interview that in the old sagas, a beard was Read more

Navy Chaplain: “I’m in it because people need to find Jesus”

US Navy Chaplain (LT) Trevor Carpenter is pastoring and discipling Marines in Hawaii, and he’s apparently making a big impact doing it:

“I currently have around 70 Marines and their spouses digging into Scripture each week through the H.E.A.R. journaling method,” said Carpenter, who’s stationed at Marine Corps Base Hawaii.

Carpenter said he picked up the journaling concept in a study Bible and carried it with him to Hawaii. He now has a study for a half-dozen married couples, single Marines, and Read more

Mikey Weinstein Targets US Military over Bible-Themed Dog Tags

Michael “Mikey” Weinstein and his research assistant, Chris Rodda, recently criticized the presence of military symbols on products sold by Shields of Strength, an online jewelry/accessory store that sells various religious and patriotic-themed items, including some with Bible verses. (While Weinstein has claimed he never acts without a complaint from a member of the military, this complaint appears to have been generated by a FoxNews article and nothing more.)  The duo took specific aim at the SoS line of dog tags, which combine Bible verses with the emblems of the US Armed Forces. From Chris Rodda [emphasis added]:

The problem? The use of official Armed Forces emblems and logos on blatantly religious items like these dog tags is not only an unconstitutional government endorsement of religion, but also violates the Department of Defense’s regulation on what items can and cannot be licensed to contain the official DoD emblems and logos.

The first accusation is laughable. No one thinks the government is establishing or endorsing a religion because a private company produces dog tags with Bible verses on them. The reference to Read more

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